Chapter 28: Writing a screenplay

Have I talked to you about how I have more self-confidence than sense sometimes, or is that just implied?

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It probably isn’t a cool, humble thing to admit – but for whatever reason (strong self-awareness, Narcissistic Personality Disorder?), I really back myself to achieve my goals – especially when they play to my strengths.

And especially when they don’t include math.

Lord Jesus, am I terrible at math … 

So when I was listening to the Rachel Hollis podcast the other day and she mentioned writing a screenplay, something in my head went:

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Girl, YES.

It was like the stars-aligned and then exploded into shooting rays of colour and light and “Oh, but, OF COURSE”!

I love movies. I love writing dialogue. I hate writing scene-setting prose, and the length of a novel makes me clench my cheeks in intimidation.

I found my dang format!

But then I thought …

How the hell do you write a screenplay?

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Do you feel like this is going to be a GIF-heavy post? I feel like it’s going to be a GIF-heavy post.

Which is always the bloody way, isn’t it.

You get pumped about trying something new and exciting, and then you realise you don’t know what the hell you’re doing, which is in fact why it’s both “new” and “exciting”.

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So, I did what any self-respecting nerd would do, and I went to the library, which is where I learnt two distinct things:

  1. I don’t know crap about searching online library catalogues. A delightful woman named Dawn* saw the idiocy in my eyes, and thankfully came to help.
  2. My son is a local legend. I’d heard from my husband that our one-and-a-half-year-old was a hit with the ladies at the library, but seeing it in the flesh was truly something to behold. I could barely move for dreamy-eyed women. It was like a Justin Bieber concert.

(*Maybe?)

Thanks to “Dawn”, I managed to track down some literature to help me on my authoring quest, and left the library feeling like Pattie Mallette, with Funny On Purpose: The Definitive Guide to an Unpredictable Career In Comedy tucked under my arm.

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Pattie Mallette is Justin Bieber’s mum. It was a niche joke.

What am I planning to write?

Honestly, I’m not totally sure. But the general vibe I’m aiming for is a jumble of Clueless, Bridesmaids, anything starring Noah Centineo, and a dash of Flight of the Conchords.

And I’d like to emphasise the words “aiming for”, because my first draft will most certainly suck baubles.

But that’s pretty much how life works when you try anything new.

If you’ve never done it before, you’re going to be bad at it … until you’re not.

The trick is not giving up in the …

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Source: @hayleydrewthis on Instagram

Setting goals and taking names

Last week was Matariki, the Māori New Year. It’s a time of reflection, hope, kindness and kai (read: noms) – and a great opportunity to give yourself another January.

It always feels harder in winter to really sink your teeth into a goal. It’s dark (SO. DARK), cold and generally grim, and the lure of Netflix and procrastination is so much stronger than in summer.

But, that’s also exactly why it’s the perfect time to start a new goal.

  • A). Because there’s literally nothing else to do.
  • And B). Because it’s a surefire way to bring some light and excitement to an otherwise dreary time of year.

Not convinced?

If you’re feeling a bit lacklustre and uninspired, I recommend listening to this episode of the Deliciously Ella Podcast – How to Break a Habit & Make Lasting Changes, with Behavioural Change Specialist Shahroo Izadi.

I loved her episode so much, I ordered Shahroo’s book, The Kindness Method and started stalking her Instagram on the regular.

Because that’s all a goal really is – making a new habit, and sticking to it.

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And if you still need some inspirations, just Google “Leslie Knope memes” until you start channeling that Big Knope Energy.

What would you love to have a go at this winter? Tell me in the comments, and give yourself a lil boost of accountability. 

Kate x

Chapter 21: Putting Yourself Out There

The past two years have been bananas.

The first year I grew a person.

And the second year I grew as a person.

But not in the way you’d expect.

Becoming a parent is fairly synonymous with becoming immeasurably more selfless, patient and tired than you ever though possible.

That’s pretty much a given (unless you suck a little bit as a human).

For me, the unexpected growth came because I wanted needed something that was just for myself.

ENTER STAGE LEFT: Kate Takes Thirty

From watching Parks and Rec, to writing about it

When I was in my early 20s, binge watching seven seasons of Parks and Recreation over a Christmas holiday wasn’t indulgent, it was frankly impressive.

But when you become a parent, the game doth change, and time becomes the ultimate luxury – both for treasuring moments with your little people (“They grow up so fast!” – everyone, ever), and for treasuring moments with yourself.

What did this look like for me?

Starting a blog.

And one that by it’s very definition, enabled and encouraged me to try lots of different things – like starting improv classes, a public Instagram (@katetakesthirty, get about it) and a podcast – oh, and I ran a half-marathon.

Ridiculous!

And nerve-wracking!

Particularly the bit about putting my face, voice, and writing on the interwebs for people to see and hear and judge, and aggghhhhhhh

But then I remember, WWRHD?

What would Rachel Hollis Do?

She would say:

“YES, SISTER!”

“You dreams don’t work unless you do.”

“Are you humble enough to suck for as long as it takes to get better?”

“What other people think about you is none of your business.”

And other such inspiring, bad ass things.

So I sucked it up, and went for it.

I’ve even started approaching lifestyle news sites to see if they want a piece of this action to take me on as a contributing writer.

I’ve tried three so far, two have knocked me back, and one is still pending.

But again, WWRHD?

She would keep trying until someone says yes, and remind me of the classic J.K Rowling “never give up” anecdote for authors about how Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was turned down 12 times by publishers before Bloomsbury said yes to the dress.

Or she’d start her own news site, cause she’s a gangster like that.

And dang it, so am I.

Just cause you’re a gangster

It goes without saying – but Rachel Hollis, J.K Rowling and I don’t have the monopoly on bad assery.

You too can be a gangster and go after your dreams whole-heartedly.

It’s hard. Heck, every time I produce something there’s a gnawing thought at the back of my mind telling me it’s probably terrible and no one will want to read/listen to it.

But then I think: Nah, boo. You do you.

People will enjoy it or they won’t. The most important thing is that you enjoy making it.

A. Because life’s miserable if you spend it trying to be someone you’re not, to impress people you don’t even like or know.

And B. Because people are smart, and they can tell when you’re being disingenuous.

My advice?

Be a gangster.

Believe in yourself. Find what you want to do, and keep doing it.

Like our girl Rach says, you will probably suck at the start. Lord knows my first podcast episode is solidly “ok, and pretty averagely alright”.

But you keep going. You keep grinding. And you keep smiling.

Because sooner or later that commitment and enthusiasm is going to breed growth and opportunity.

Don’t give up now!

The best is yet to come.

If money was no object, what work would you do for free? If you’re not sure what your dream job is, that’s a good question to start with.

Or if you know what your dream is, tell meeee! Feel free to comment below or hit up my DMs on the gram. I love hearing from you guys.

Kate x